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To provide evidence as a witness, subject to an oath or affirmation, in order to establish a particular fact or set of facts.

Court rules require witnesses to testify about the facts they know that are relevant to the determination of the outcome of the case. Under the law a person may not testify until he is sworn in. This requirement is usually met by a witness swearing to speak the truth. A person who does not believe in appealing to God may affirm to the court that the testimony about to be given is the truth.

A witness may testify as to facts directly observed, which is called direct evidence; facts learned indirectly, which is called Circumstantial Evidence; or, in the case of an expert, an opinion the expert has formed based on facts embodied in a hypothetical question. The parties to the court proceeding are free to question a witness as to the truthfulness of the testimony or the competence of the witness.

The Fifth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution gives the defendant in a criminal trial the right not to testify, so as to avoid Self-Incrimination. In addition, the rule that a person must testify when called as a witness has several exceptions based on the existence of a special relationship between the defendant and the potential witness. Among the most important of these exceptions are confidential communications between a husband and a wife, an attorney and a client, a doctor and a patient, and a priest and penitent.

The rules of evidence govern what a person may testify about at a court proceeding. Though there are numerous exceptions, generally a witness may not testify about what she heard another say if that testimony is offered to prove the truth of the matter asserted. Such testimony is known as Hearsay. For example, if the witness testifies that he heard that john doe was married and this statement is offered to prove that John Doe was married, it is hearsay and the court will strike the testimony from the record.


Attorney-Client Privilege; Marital Communications Privilege; Physician-Patient Privilege; Privileged Communication.


v. to give oral evidence under oath in answer to questions posed by attorneys either at trial or at a deposition (testimony under oath outside of court), with the opportunity for opposing attorneys to cross-examine the witness in regard to answers given. (See: testimony, trial, deposition, evidence)


verb acknowledge openly, affirm, affirm under oath, allege, assert, asseverate, attest, aver, avow, be sworn, bear witness, declare, depone, depose, establish, express, give evidence, give one's word, indicate, make solemn declaration, profess, prove, show, state, state a fact, state a truth, swear, take one's oath, take the stand, testari, testificari, verify
Associated concepts: compulsion to testify, privilege against self-incrimination, testify in one's own defense, testify under oath
See also: acknowledge, adduce, attest, avouch, avow, bear, bespeak, certify, inform, manifest, notify, posit, promise, swear, verify, vouch, vow


to give TESTIMONY.

TO TESTIFY. To give evidence according to law; the examination of a witness who declares his knowledge of facts.

References in periodicals archive ?
It's just hard to afford the clinical psychologists or physicians who will testify that the poor parent is competent.
Emanual Tanay,simply refused to testify on behalf of a murder suspect in Kalamazoo County, Michigan for "slave wages' of $150 per day.
The record in this case demonstrates that Dodds had diligently and successfully worked to obtain Pledger's appearance, for she had waited at the court at least one full day to testify already and was ordered back by the court, and there was no indication of dilatory conduct by Dodds.
TESTIFY uses the Saber(R) mixed-signal simulator and MAST(R) hardware description language along with Analogy's InSpecs(R) Pro advanced analysis tools to provide test engineers with information on fault behavior of the UUT and effectiveness of proposed test programs.
Included in court-related expenses is on-call overtime - nearly $9 million paid out last year to officers just waiting to be summoned to testify in felony or misdemeanor cases.
To punish the agent, prosecutors may need to get the leaker's name from the reporter; but if the reporter refuses to testify because of a ``journalist's privilege'' to protect confidential sources, the agent may never be caught.
Alleviating fears that a Canoga Park human smuggling case would collapse on a technicality, a federal judge ruled Monday that 10 of the illegal immigrants found in the ``drop house'' can testify at trial.
LANCASTER - The state Supreme Court has upheld a Littlerock man's domestic violence conviction, ruling that the trial judge did not err by allowing an expert to testify about battered women's syndrome.
Gage plans on calling Murray to testify when the trial resumes Thursday.
A jury deliberated more than three days before convicting Jurcoane of killing Lloyd Bryden and Alice McCannel despite the refusal of the main witness - Jurcoane's wife - to testify.
California and eight other states had planned to call the witnesses, including a former software tester for Microsoft, to testify that Microsoft has done much of the work needed to create the stripped-down version of the Windows operating system that the states want.
There is a room full of witnesses who will testify to that.